Kultureller BoykottOffene Briefe

Open letter to Blixa Bargeld and Teho Teardo: Don’t play in Apartheid Israel!

BDS Amsterdam – BDS Berlin – BDS-Gruppe Bonn –
BDS Hamburg -BDS Initiative Oldenburg – BDS Italia – BDS Madrid – BDS Nederland – BDS South Africa – Gaza Action Ireland – Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) – Jüdisch-Palästinensische Dialoggruppe- Jüdische Stimme für gerechten Frieden in Nahost e.V.- Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign (SPSC)

haben sich in einem offenen Brief an Blixa Bargeld and Teho Teardo gewandt und sie aufgefordert, ihren Konzertauftritt am 15. September 2016 in Tel Aviv zu überdenken.

September 2, 2016

Hello Blixa and Teho,
We are writing with regard to your show in Tel Aviv scheduled for the 15th of September.

Perhaps you are not fully aware of the call (1) from Palestinian civil society for a cultural boycott of Israel, similar to the famous boycott against apartheid South Africa in the 1980s.

The call to boycott Israel until it complies with international law and universal principles of human rights was first made in 2005, by over 170 (now over 200) Palestinian civil society groups. The boycott is a non-violent tactic against oppressive state power. It would be extremely disappointing if artists of your stature chose to break this call for solidarity with the Palestinian people, particularly at a time when Israel is escalating its daily attacks on them.

Israel regularly commits numerous violations (2) of international law in occupied Palestinian territories, among them: land theft and annexation; military control over the civilian population; stealing of natural resources such as natural gas, stone and water; punitive demolition of houses; continuous expansion of settlements; mass arbitrary arrest and torture, including of children; and restrictions on freedom of movement. In addition, there are, of course, countless onslaughts on the West Bank and Gaza. This violence is overwhelmingly asymmetrical. (3)

In the 2014 attack on Gaza over 2,200 Palestinians, most of them civilians, and over 550 of them children, were killed (4) by Israeli bombing. Over 11,200 Palestinians were injured including over 3,400 children. 18,000 homes were damaged or completely destroyed. More than 70 medical facilities were damaged or completely destroyed. All this violence was carried out against people living in already desperate conditions, indeed, prior to that attack the UN released a report that Gaza would become unlivable by 2020 unless the siege was lifted.

Culture isn’t created in a vacuum, but is both the product and the mirror of our reality. We are all responsible for and to one another. The Israeli Foreign Ministry stated (5) in 2005 that “We are seeing culture as a hasbara (propaganda) tool of the first rank, and I do not differentiate between hasbara and culture”. The reality is, that whether they wish it or not, Israel utilizes artists playing in Israel as part of this ‘culture washing’ of its crimes against the Palestinian people.

Einstürzende Neubauten deservedly earned respect, as well as a place in cultural history by inventing, constructing and deconstructing their own instruments in a defiant show of creativity. We wonder if Blixa and Teho Teardo wish to be deconstructed by the state of Israel and reconstructed as instruments of its “Brand Israel“ propaganda campaign?

There is growing support all over the world for BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) of Israel, and many artists have refused to cross the Palestinian picket line, among them: Roger Waters, Lauryn Hill, Brian Eno, Ken Loach, Faithless, Elvis Costello, Thurston Moore, Talib Kweli, the late Gil Scott Heron, Cassandra Wilson, Cat Power, Stevie Wonder, Mira Nair, Alice Walker, Mike Leigh, Arundhati Roy, and Jean Luc Godard.
We sincerely hope that Blixa and Teho act conscientiously and join them in their acts of solidarity.

Yours sincerely,

BDS Amsterdam
BDS Berlin
BDS-Gruppe Bonn
BDS Hamburg
BDS Initiative Oldenburg
BDS Italia
BDS Madrid
BDS Nederland
BDS South Africa
Diensten en Onderzoek Centrum (docP) Netherlands
Gaza Action Ireland
Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC)
Jüdisch-Palästinensische Dialoggruppe
Jüdische Stimme für gerechten Frieden in Nahost e.V.
Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign (SPSC)

(1) https://bdsmovement.net/call
(2) https://www.hrw.org/middle-east/n-africa/israel/palestine
(3) http://www.countthekids.org/
(4) http://gaza.ochaopt.org/…/key-figures-on-the-2014-hostilit…/
(5) http://www.haaretz.com/print-e…/features/about-face-1.170267

Offener Brief an Blixa Bargeld und Teho Teardo: Spielen Sie nicht in Apartheid Israel!
Lettera aperta a Blixa Bargeld e Teho Teardo: Non esibitevi per l’apartheid israeliana!

There are further letters to Blixa Bargeld and Teho Teardo from